January 2004 - Posts

Next week, I'll publish some RSS feeds on my site (i.e. I'll be the consumer of public RSS feeds). You can find a beta of those feeds on www.bartdesmet.net/news. In fact, consuming such a feed it pretty simple using the asp:Xml control, a few lines of code and an XSLT transform. I'm using caching as well to reduce the traffic from my server to the RSS feed server.Del.icio.us | Digg It | Technorati | Blinklist | Furl | reddit | DotNetKicks

For those who didn't read my article on database cache invalidation in ASP.NET Whidbey yet (shame on you :-))))) you can find it on www.asp.net as one the "article of today". A permanent link to the article can be found on www.bartdesmet.net/msdn, where all my MSDN Belux articles are listed.Del.icio.us | Digg It | Technorati | Blinklist | Furl | reddit | DotNetKicks

Yesterday (it already over midnight) the alpha release of the next version of the ASP.NET Forums was released on http://forums.asp.net/builds/Alpha/. You can download the bits from that location if you want to install the build on your machine. Thanks to all the contributors on this release (especially Rob and Terry) for the great work they have been doing on this project. When you test the software, keep in mind it's only an Alpha... For more info on the releases, take a look at http://forums.asp.net/Forums/ShowForum.aspx?ForumID=15.

Next month, I'll start with the Dutch translation of the forum software which will become available in the beta (or the RTM) of the forum software. Some non-coding work this time but it has to be done as well :-). On our way to a great release of the ASP.NET Forums and I'm going to bed now...

Cheers!

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My new site has been released this morning on www.bartdesmet.net. The basic changes are the overall layout of the site and the photo gallery (at last!). Still to come (can take another few months) is the toolbox where I'll put all pieces of software and tools I've written in .NET. Examples include: the photogallery I released earlier via MSDN Belux, extensions on the Cassini webserver I've written (e.g. wrapped in a windows service, secured with ticketing using WSE, including download resuming, etc), different little tools (AD population, Exchange mailbox creation scripts, photo conversion and photo resizing command-line tools, and much much more). So, check it out regularly, one day it will be there :-)Del.icio.us | Digg It | Technorati | Blinklist | Furl | reddit | DotNetKicks

Watch this video, demonstrating some of the cool features in Longhorn: Avalon, Indigo, "the fundamentals" and WinFS:

"Watch a video demonstration as Carter Maslan from Microsoft's Platform Strategy and Partner Group highlights the work being done to connect all the participants in commercial real estate transactions. See how we envision using Longhorn technology to coordinate end-to-end business processes across organizations and systems as investors and brokers identify the best properties, negotiate over purchase documents, perform due-diligence, obtain financing, and close escrow."

You can find it over here: http://msdn.microsoft.com/longhorn/productinfo/

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My latest article has been published on MSDN a few days ago. This time I cover one of the new features of ASP.NET Whidbey:

"Database cache invalidation is one of the new features in the upcoming release of ASP.NET, codename "Whidbey". In this article I'll show you how easy it is to use this feature in your application using the PDC version of ASP.NET Whidbey."

Check it out on http://www.microsoft.com/belux/nl/msdn/community/columns/desmet/dbcacheinvalidation.mspx

Upcoming articles will cover other Whidbey features and other great technologies such as SQL Server NS, AD/AM, etc. Still a bunch of work to do :-)

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The latest episode of MSDN TV introduces the new ClickOnce technology which will be shipped with Whidbey. You can find the episode over here: http://msdn.microsoft.com/msdntv/episode.aspx?xml=episodes/en/20040108ClickOnceJC/manifest.xml.

People who like the Application Updater Block in .NET Framework v1.x applications today will love the idea that all this functionality has been integrated now with Visual Studio .NET "Whidbey" and the support for auto-updating applications has become a lot easier to implement. What ClickOnce wants to do, is to combine the best of two worlds: the world of rich clients (Windows Forms apps) and the world of easy-to-deploy web apps (e.g. xcopy deployment of new releases, updates, etc of ASP.NET apps). Thanks to ClickOnce, the deployment factor of an application's livecycle can be eliminated when you have to make a choice between thin (web) clients and fat (Windows) clients. You can find a complete overview of the brand new (if fact it's a major upgrade of several existing pieces of the big .NET technology pie) ClickOnce technology on MSDN: http://msdn.microsoft.com/library/default.asp?url=/library/en-us/dnwinforms/html/clickonce.asp.

Pretty amazing stuff. If you have Whidbey already installed on your development machine, don't hesitate to check this out. It's really as easy as "click once to deploy".

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Recently the Windows XP SP2 beta testing program has started. Windows XP SP2 will be more than just "another collection of patches", let me explain:

  • New hardware support: Windows XP SP2 will support Bluetooth 1.1 and add new support for WLANs (hotspots)
  • SP2 will take security to a much higher level by default
    • The Internet Connection Firewall has been replaced with a better firewall called "Windows Firewall"
    • The Messenger Windows service will be disabled by default (remember "net send" :-))
    • Blaster or similar worm viruses won't have any chances anymore since the RPC service (Remote Procedure Call) will run with reduced privileges on the system (as well as DCOM)
  • Patching management will become easier with the SUS Client 2.0 (Software Update Services) which is a great benefit in terms of managability of networks of all sizes
  • Internet security: Outlook Express will be more secure and reduce the risk for damage on your pc due to unsafe attachments etc

The beta is available for invitees on the Windows Beta site and is currently available for MSDN Subscribers (since mid-December).

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The ASP.NET Forums v2.0 Alpha will go on-line on January 15th on http://forums.asp.net providing access to the forums of http://www.asp.net/forums. There are tons of new features in it:

  • Support for avatars
  • Possibility to add a link to your weblog
  • Improved search functionality
  • Message icons
  • Great message editing support with drag-and-drop for emoticons, functionality to insert C# / VB.NET code snippets
  • "E-mail replies on this post" function
  • Pinned posts in a seperate section
  • Quoting support with [quote] tags
  • IP address logging
  • NNTP feeds
  • Forums accessible via NNTP (read-only)
  • Ratings on threads

Other features will include (possibly):

More about the release on http://forums.asp.net/Forums/ShowPost.aspx?PostID=405535

Enjoy the new forums!

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This is a great tip I found on Bink's website (www.bink.nu). Can be pretty cool to have it on your pc especially for those who are using OWA very frequently...

HOWTO: Make Outlook Web Access your default mailer:

1.  Add the following to a .reg file

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Clients\Mail\OWA]
@="Outlook Web Access"

[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Clients\Mail\OWA\shell\open\command]
@="\"C:\\Program Files\\Internet Explorer\\iexplore.exe\" http://server/exchange/alias/"

2.  Import it into the registry by double-clicking the .reg file  (Please know that mucking with the registry is potentially dangerous and can make your system unstable).

3.  Boot IE

4.  Go to IE's Tools / Options...  Programs tab

5.  Choose “Outlook Web Access” from the E-mail dropdown.

6.  Hit OK.

Now when you hit the “Mail” button on your MS keyboard you get OWA coming up automatically.  You can also add OWA to the Start Menu now, just right+click on it and choose Properties, then click the Customize start menu and choose “Outlook Web Access” from the E-mail dropdown

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